Sebastien Ogier will be free to fight with Sebastien Loeb in Rally Argentina despite the Citroen driver not being a title threat.
Volkswagen motorsport chief Jost Capito says he has no intention of ordering Ogier to let his archrival go when Loeb returns for one of his World Rally Championship guest appearances this week.
Ogier enjoys a 54-point lead at the top of the WRC table ahead of Argentina and the Frenchman himself admits he does not need to be drawn into an unnecessary fight with the defending world champion, who is only competing on four WRC rounds this year. But Capito said he understood Ogier and Loeb's rivalry and would let his driver make his own decisions.
"Beating Loeb is not a priority for the team," said Capito. "It is somehow a priority for Seb [Ogier], but he is clever enough not to throw anything away for the championship just to fight with Loeb.
"He is mature enough to handle this situation. He is comfortable, but he won't risk everything to win.
"I won't tell him to slow down, he can choose what he wants to risk – he knows he is driving for his own championship as well as ours."
Asked if he thought his driver had the beating of seven-time Argentina winner Loeb, Capito said: "Yes."
Ogier was fastest on Wednesday's superspecial, with Loeb in third.